Time to get your feet in shape for the upcoming summer!
During the winter, one often hides their feet in socks and enclosed shoes, but you can’t let your feet get too cozy! Often boney areas will slowly cause areas of irritation or calluses, due to constant friction from your shoes and boots. The warm summer days are only around the corner, so here are some tips from your podiatrist to get your feet ready for the summer! We want to make sure you get those feet looking pretty and polished in no time.
Dr. Stephanie Jameson’s recommendations listed below can help get your feet up to speed!
Remove your nail polish and evaluate those nails! Nail health is often overlooked. Enclosed shoes are a breeding ground for fungus. There are lots of over-the-counter fungal treatments, but they may not be that effective. If you see discoloration within the nail, it is best to see a podiatrist as soon as possible. Also, cut straight across in a square shape, and make sure not to cut too low on the edges, or this could cause a whole host of problems, such as developing an ingrown nail. Use a nail file to smooth the edges and let the nails breathe to aid in staying healthy and fungus free!
- Soak your feet in warm soapy water or Epsom salts to relax them and keep them clean! Soaking your feet doesn’t just feel good, it helps soften the skin and get them ready for their next coat. Scrub the soles of your feet with a foot file or pumice stone to gently rid the hard, loose skin. Make sure you avoid irritating any cracks or open sores on the feet.
- Hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate! Moisture those feet every day! The best emollient creams contain urea cream, which helps eat away at dead skin and promotes healing of dry, cracked skin. It helps to spread the moisturizer lightly on the foot and then cover with a sock to allow adequate absorption. There are lots of home remedies for dry skin but it is best to see your podiatrist for recommendations. The podiatrist can safely treat your calluses and remove them if the pumice stone is not working.
- Go out and buy some supportive sandals! It’s easy to get in the habit of non-supportive flip flops and sandals every day! My recommendation would be OOFOS or Vionics, to provide some support and protection for your feet! We often see a huge increase in patients with pain to heels, arches, and balls of the feet due to poorly supportive summer sandals. Also, avoid going barefoot in public places to avoid athlete’s foot, warts, toenail fungus, etc!
- Don’t forget to load your feet with sunscreen! Many people forget to do this and your feet are just as vulnerable to sun damage as the rest of your sun-exposed skin. Getting a sunburn on your feet can be very uncomfortable, especially if you have to wear shoes after getting burnt. Don’t forget to keep reapplying. Skin cancer on the foot is dangerous, as it’s often harder to diagnose since it can go unnoticed.
I hope all of these tips can be of use when prepping for a busy, sunny summer that is just around the corner. Kansas City Foot and Ankle takes your foot health seriously! If you have any questions or concerns about footwear, toenails, or generalized foot issues, we would love to help you at one of our three convenient Kansas City Foot and Ankle locations. We want you to stay as active as possible and have those feet in tip-top shape for the summer. Please call Kansas City Foot and Ankle at 816-943-1111, to get your feet evaluated as soon as possible.